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A survival analysis of tax professionals’ performance and internship experience

Carl R. Borgia (Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida, USA)
Philip H. Siegel (McCurry & Company CPAs, Boca Raton, Florida, USA)
Dennis Ortiz (University of Texas, Pan American, Edinburg, Texas, USA)

Accounting Research Journal

ISSN: 1030-9616

Article publication date: 28 October 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to consider the effect of an internship experience on tax accountants’ professional performance.

Design/methodology/approach

It uses survival analysis, a dynamic methodology that allows for more precise modeling than static traditional methods used to study promotion and turnover rates in the past. The hypotheses were tested using a longitudinal database obtained from the human resource departments of regional Certified Public Accountant firms located in the southeastern and mid-south areas of the USA.

Findings

Results were mixed. As in previous studies on the effects of internships on subsequent professional performance, tax accounting professionals with a master’s degree and prior internship experience had significantly faster promotion rates than those professionals with a master’s degree and no internship experience. However, tax professionals with a master’s degree and prior internship experience did not demonstrate a significant difference in turnover rate when compared to the no-internship group.

Practical implications

This research provides evidence that students, employers and institutions of higher education can use to guide them in their decisions regarding the effects of structured internships on professional performance – in this case, the professional performance of tax accountants.

Originality/value

Previous research on tax professionals’ performance and internship experience made use of static research methodologies. This study uses the more dynamic methodology of survival analysis to see if different findings result.

Keywords

Citation

R. Borgia, C., H. Siegel, P. and Ortiz, D. (2014), "A survival analysis of tax professionals’ performance and internship experience", Accounting Research Journal, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 266-285. https://doi.org/10.1108/ARJ-04-2013-0018

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited